Tuesday, August 30, 2011


This weekend I had a wedding to attend. After desperately attempting to get out of it, I was stuck, I had to go. I originally bought a plan ticket on sale, but after a series of frustrating events, I drove the 5.5 hours up to Chicago.

I decided to make the best out of my plans getting all messed up by leaving crazy early in order to get to one of my favorite Chicago-area churches. After a side trip to Enterprise at O'Hare, I walked in just in time to take a seat and enjoy their service. Man, do those people know how to worship! It was amazing to be surrounded by people excited to be worshiping God. I caught myself with tears at one point out of joy of being part of God's family.

I sat behind one of the elders who were sitting by his wife and a friend with a baby. At one point the baby needed changing. I watched, nearly in shock, as the pastor offered and went and changed the dirty diaper (the diaper of a child that's not his). After they returned the baby started fussing and he again left and calmed the baby in the back so the mother could sit and enjoy the service. I was blown away by his selflessness, care, and support for his friend. But, then again, that's how these guys are; they model for their church exactly what it means to sacrifice first and most for their families and church. They serve each other and the church humbly, sacrificially, and wisely. I'm glad I sacrificed the few hours of sleep to make it there.

After church it was off to the wedding... a Sunday afternoon wedding. Weird. In the middle of the ceremony the best man started to look a little sick. Finally someone from the back walked up just in time to get him off the stage before he passed out. The ceremony went on without a hitch. I've always heard about this happening, but never actually saw it for myself.

Not to be out done, the bride started getting sick at the reception. Somehow everyone pulled it together and accomplished every stereotypical wedding reception task there is. When the dancing finally started the dj took center stage. He made every single person (and I mean every single person) get out on the dance floor so he could teach us all the moves he made up to the song...for every song!!

My sister-in-law and I quickly made our way to the restroom somewhere in the middle of the second one. And, after hiding out during the bouquet toss, I couldn't take any more mandatory fun and quickly said my good-byes and headed to my hotel room in the city.

Monday the plan was to do anything I wanted. First order of business... run! I was suppose to do 4.5 miles, but because it's Chicago I did 6.5 unknowingly.

Right around here I convinced myself that St. Louis needed a gigantic lake as well.

Then it was off to the Art Institute. This was one that I'd always meant to go to, but I'm much better at museums by myself. I'm selfish like that and want to go at my own pace. I spent two hours meandering through each room confirming the fact that I don't get modern art and falling in love with impressionist art from Monet to Vincent Van Gogh.

No trip to Chicago is complete for me without a stop at Ikea. Sadly I learned going to Ikea about two months after moving is the optimal time. Last trip I'd been in my new place just days and had no clue what I actually needed. Not this time! I went in for just a couple of items and walked out with two gigantic bags full of goodies.

By God's grace I survived another family weekend. Today at the office I was telling my co-workers all about the trip and what happened. One of the guys nailed it on the head when he said "Oh! I've become that bitter about going to weddings too." I think I have some repenting to do.

Fresh and Healthy

I just got back from the grocery store. As I put away everything I realized I had 4 items that did not go in the fridge or freezer... 4! To me that means I'm eating fresh, healthy food. Check out that basket...

Somehow I managed to get through the store sticking to a list and not purchasing any sugary (and/or salty) snacks. I'm rather proud of myself... especially considering the mood I was in while shopping.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Sound the Trumpet!!


It's a wonder what eating healthy and having a stocked fridge will do to you! I LOVE the e-mealz! I really only ate two of the meals, but it kept a stocked pantry for me. A guideline to follow. When I felt like making something from the e-mealz I did, but there were a couple nights were I looked and thought... I can do something else with this. Insert creativity and healthy eating! A recipe for a great weight loss week!!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Big Dreams

I REALLY want to do the Chicago Marathon next year! All of it... all 26.2 miles! I've been thinking about it since I made a promise to one of my friends that we'd do a full marathon before we were 40. I forgot to calculate that she's about 9 years older than me and that we'd have to do it in 2012. Since then she got injured and her running career is in jeopardy. Can't blame her... I blame her abnormally small knee caps!

But, it planted in me a seed, a dream... could I finish a marathon?! Could I actually do the Chicago Marathon in 2012?! I'd really like to try!

Sunday, August 21, 2011


Over the last two months I've hit a plateau. I've lost and gained and lost and gained the same 5-8 pounds. It's terribly frustrating; one week I'm feeling great and losing 4-5 pounds and turn right around and gain it back. I've blamed a lot of things; some legit and some not so much. Finally last night I did some googling and found this:

Expect your metabolism to slow down as you lose weight. The more weight your body is carrying, the more calories your body has to burn in order to sustain itself, even at rest. When you begin restricting your calorie intake, you'll lose weight relatively easily because your body's high caloric needs are not being met. But after you begin to shed the weight, the body has less mass to carry and thus needs fewer calories. In order to continue losing weight, you will have to restrict your caloric intake even further in order to maintain a difference between what your body needs and what you are providing.[2]

It made sense and clicked. I had changed my exercise and dieting and lost 35 pounds. I had changed enough to lose that much weight and in order to lose more, I am going to have to adapt and change. Here's my game plan:

1. no more sweets - I've been out of control with sweets. Last night I had ice cream with a friend; Wednesday there's a game night I'm going to. I'm allowing myself to bend a little there. But, that's it. 

2. meal planning - shockingly I HATE menu planning. I'm learning I'm not as big of a planner and detail person as I've fit myself into. I tried to plan a week's menu on Saturday and it made me want to crawl into the fetal position. WAAAYYY too much work...enter e-mealz.com. I got a 3 month subscription and started this week. It's easy! 

3. tracking - I've slacked from tracking my food. It's coming back

4. water - drinking lots of it... three nalgenes a day.

5. running - technically I've done all my training runs so far, but they haven't been pretty. Getting back out there and hitting it hard. 

With much prayer I feel like I'm on the edge of the plateau and about to fall face first back into weight lose!